South African Cultural Observatory

Australian economist gives free lecture on technology’s influence on the book industry

BY 04.04.17

THE BOOK industry – like many others – is under pressure from technological change. Can it re-invent itself leveraging off this technology? Will the book format as we know it today survive? What do consumers really want from a book – the tactile or technological?

These are questions Australian economist Paul Crosby has been grappling with as he tries to chart the future of the e-book on the wider book industry.

Crosby, a Doctoral Fellow at the Department of Economics at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia, will this week be giving a free public lecture in Grahamstown on his research into this topic.

The lecture, titled, ‘Don’t judge a book by its cover: A discrete choice model of cultural experience good consumption’, is jointly hosted by Rhodes University Department of Economics, the Economic Society of South Africa (ESSA) and the South African Cultural Observatory (SACO).

The SACO is a leading national think tank focused on monitoring, mapping, measuring and valuing South Africa’s cultural and creative economy.  It is a project of the Department of Arts & Culture (DAC), launched in 2015, and hosted by the Nelson Mandela University in partnership with Rhodes and Fort Hare Universities. It is mandated to produce a working cultural information system for South Africa.

“Technological change is transforming the book industry. In particular, the digitisation of books has given rise to a suite of new content delivery formats for publishers, such as the e-book and audiobook,” says Crosby.

“While the rise in popularity of the e-book has been well documented the format’s influence on the future of the book industry is a matter of much conjecture and uncertainty. This is perpetuated by the fact that books are a cultural experience good – that is to say books possess varying degrees of cultural content, which may give rise to the presence of a cultural value that exists above and beyond a book’s value in exchange.”

The lecture is based on a survey of over 250 Australian book readers.

Readers were tasked with choosing from a selection of books, divided between four discrete format alternatives: paperback books, hardback books, e-books and audiobooks – and their choices analysed to find out what makes cultural experience goods, such as books, so unique.

“I am excited to share the preliminary results the survey to examine consumers’ book consumption choices. The more we understand how consumers consume and what they want from cultural good, such as books, the better able we are to create products – whether analogue or digital – that cater to people’s needs,” he added.

The public lecture takes place on Thursday April 6, at 5:30pm at Seminar Room 1, Eden Grove Complex, Rhodes University. Drinks and snacks will be provided.

Fidelio Trio from Ireland perform for JMS Fidelio Trio from Ireland perform for JMS

AFTER the winter break Fidelio Trio, a virtuoso ensemble from Ireland, will start the second half of the Johannesburg Musical Society’s year on Sunday 27 August at 17.00

READ MORE
25th Hilton Arts Festival programme released 25th Hilton Arts Festival programme released

FROM 21 August, the programme and schedule will be released on www.hiltonfestival.co.za. It is all happening next week! Make a note of these important dates and outlets to be sure you get your programme as soon as possible. If you live in KZN be sure to buy The Sunday Times this Sunday 20 August for the 32-page tabloid sized pullout. Booking opens 21 August. Hard (tree unfriendly!) copies of the programme will be at the following outlets from 21 August: PMB, HOWICK and MIDLANDS.

READ MORE

Iziko Gallery Women's Day Premier: The African Choir 1891 Re-Imagined Iziko Gallery Women's Day Premier: The African Choir 1891 Re-Imagined

THE African Choir 1891 Re-Imagined is a contemporary multimedia installation based on The African Choir’s first tour to Victorian England in 1891. The African Choir 1891 Re-Imagined was first shown at Autograph ABP, London in 2016 and is a collaboration between Autograph ABP and Tshisa Boys Productions. It premieres in South Africa at the Iziko South African National Gallery on National Women’s Day and will feature guest presentations by the creators of the exhibition

READ MORE
Market Theatre Laboratory: 2018 applications open Market Theatre Laboratory: 2018 applications open

APPLICATIONS for the Market Lab’s flagship programme, a two-year full-time course in Theatre and Performance, have been opened from 1 August until 30 September. The Market Theatre Laboratory offers a unique curriculum that trains professionals in the performing arts field, providing an incubation space for young artists to find their voice and develop their craft.

READ MORE

More News
Fidelio Trio from Ireland perform for JMS Fidelio Trio from Ireland perform for JMS

AFTER the winter break Fidelio Trio, a virtuoso ensemble from Ireland, will start the second half of the Johannesburg Musical Society’s year on Sunday 27 August at 17.00

25th Hilton Arts Festival programme released 25th Hilton Arts Festival programme released

FROM 21 August, the programme and schedule will be released on www.hiltonfestival.co.za. It is all happening next week! Make a note of these important dates and outlets to be sure you get your programme as soon as possible. If you live in KZN be sure to buy The Sunday Times this Sunday 20 August for the 32-page tabloid sized pullout. Booking opens 21 August. Hard (tree unfriendly!) copies of the programme will be at the following outlets from 21 August: PMB, HOWICK and MIDLANDS.

Iziko Gallery Women's Day Premier: The African Choir 1891 Re-Imagined Iziko Gallery Women's Day Premier: The African Choir 1891 Re-Imagined

THE African Choir 1891 Re-Imagined is a contemporary multimedia installation based on The African Choir’s first tour to Victorian England in 1891. The African Choir 1891 Re-Imagined was first shown at Autograph ABP, London in 2016 and is a collaboration between Autograph ABP and Tshisa Boys Productions. It premieres in South Africa at the Iziko South African National Gallery on National Women’s Day and will feature guest presentations by the creators of the exhibition

Market Theatre Laboratory: 2018 applications open Market Theatre Laboratory: 2018 applications open

APPLICATIONS for the Market Lab’s flagship programme, a two-year full-time course in Theatre and Performance, have been opened from 1 August until 30 September. The Market Theatre Laboratory offers a unique curriculum that trains professionals in the performing arts field, providing an incubation space for young artists to find their voice and develop their craft.

Rwanda: Government to Invest More in Creative Industry Rwanda: Government to Invest More in Creative Industry

THE Rwandan Government wants to reap more from its creative and cultural industries and this week (Jul 2017) indicated that it plans to inject more funds into the industry. This according to Minister for Trade, Industry, and East African Affairs, Francois Kanimba, who addressed members of the creative and cultural arts industry drawn from different countries around the world in a workshop organised by the International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers (CISAC) in Kigali.

Connect with us